Essential Oils For Your Labor and Delivery
Updated: Jun 8, 2019
Over the past few years, essential oils have gotten BIG. The powerful little aromatic drops are being used to support everything from immune function, stress and sleep. And judging by the title of this post, you guessed it, essential oils are also a great tool to help support labor and delivery.
In a meta-analysis of 17 clinical trials of low-risk pregnant women, aromatherapy helped to reduce labor pain in the transition phase ( usually the most intense part of labor) as well as reduce the duration of the active phase of labor. When used in low-risk pregnant women, the authors didn’t find any evidence that essential oils caused pregnancy complications.
Natural, unmedicated births have been climbing in recent years. Certainly most women are aware that there really are some great benefits to not medicalizing the natural process of your birth. But just because we dont want an epidural or c section, it doesnt mean we dont want to be comfortable. We know that there are several all-natural ways out there to help mitigate the discomforts one of them is simply by using some essential oils. Not only will you feel comforted and supported, you’ll have an enhanced grasp on your senses and you’ll be able to remember this magical moment for years to come. So when you hire a doula, make sure EO are a huge part of their doula tool bag. They may be small items but they have a very large impact.
When choosing which essential oils to bring with you to the hospital or at home when you’re about to welcome your new baby into the world, you’ll realize there are a lot of options. You can easily get lost in textbooks and websites for hours on end trying to find that perfect combination of essential oils for your birth.
So, to alleviate some unneeded stress and worry, we’ve researched it for you. Each essential oil has its own properties and each one helps in different ways.
The first essential oil that is an absolute must is Lavender. Lavender is a calming scent that will help put your mind at ease- when in labor your mind needs to be calm and relaxed. I hope. When you inhale that lavender though, you’ll find yourself slowing down just a bit and it’ll help you take that deep breath you so desperately need. Lavender is a very good essential oil to use when you are feeling stressed and wound up as its light scent will relax your muscles and mind.
The next essential oil recommended is lemon. Lemon is known to be a very “clean” scent and you’ll easily feel a little better when you inhale its fresh aroma. Lemon helps with nausea and that is a very common symptom to have when you are in labor. When you feel that nausea rushing in, reach for that bottle of lemon, it’ll be a life saver.
Peppermint is another great essential oil for nausea. Its also quite re-energizing and when labor is long or you have to switch into a more active position, peppermint can be just the thing.
Clary sage is the best option when it comes to minimizing tearing and relieving muscle tension resulting from emotional stress. It’s also thought to induce labor.
A small pilot study of 11 women giving birth for the first time found that oxytocin levels tended to increase for about 15 minutes after inhaling clary sage. Oxytocin if you are familiar is associated with causing uterine contractions, its the love hormone and is a HUGE part of successful natural birth. Good levels of this hormone will help you avoid the synthetic version that tends to lead down the cascade of interventions. Doulas are a big fan of this essential oil.
The last oil that we believe you cannot go into labor without is Frankincense. One study of 126 women who hadn’t had a baby before found women who used frankincense aromatherapy during labor reported less pain intensity than women who didn’t inhale frankincense.
Those should get you started, but leave a comment below if you want to me post a part II because there are alot more essential oils you'll want during labor and delivery.